Aloe : Aloe barbadensis
Although aloe is a tender succulent, you can grow it indoors on a warm sunny windowsill or greenhouse during winter. It is a very handy first aid remedy for cuts and skin abrasions – just slice a leaf horizontally and apply the clear gel that oozes out of the centre directly onto the wound.
Aloe gel has been shown to speed up healing time and encourage cellular repair in burns, minor wounds, psoriasis and the red, scaly, flaking skin of seborrheic dermatitis. It can help skin recover from sunburn and frostbite and is often used in beauty treatments as a skin softener. I will post a recipe soon.
Its astringent properties may also help tighten skin and minimise wrinkles. Caution: the clear gel from the inner leaves is different from the yellowish juice that comes from the tough outer edge of the leaves, which is known as aloes when it has solidified. Aloes can cause intestinal cramping, so don’t orally ingest the Aloes.